, Volume 28, Issue 1, pp 69-76
Date: 08 Aug 2009

A 1-kb Bacteriophage Lambda Fragment Functions as an Insulator to Effectively Block Enhancer–Promoter Interactions in Arabidopsis thaliana

Rent the article at a discount

Rent now

* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.

Get Access


Enhancers are known to be capable of overriding the specificity of nearby promoters in a distance-dependent manner, which is problematic when multiple promoters coexist in a single transgene unit. In an attempt to determine whether enhancer activation function is inversely related to its distance from the target promoter, we inserted 1-, 2-, and 4-kb bacteriophage λ fragments, respectively, between the cauliflower mosaic virus 35S enhancer and a flower-specific AGAMOUS second intron-derived promoter (AGIP) fused to the β-glucuronidase (GUS) coding region. In the absence of an insert sequence, the 35S enhancer activates AGIP-driven GUS expression in vegetative tissues of transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana lines. Moreover, neither the 2-kb nor the 4-kb λ fragment was able to block GUS expression in transgenic leaves, implying that the 35S enhancer can override a distance barrier of at least 4 kb in our system. Unexpectedly, insertion of the 1-kb λ insert into the same site resulted in diminished GUS expression in transgenic leaves. Our data indicate that this fragment functions as a true enhancer-blocking insulator that could potentially be utilized to minimize enhancer–promoter interference between multiple transcriptional units within a plasmid vector during plant transformation experiments.